All-American Freshmen (Updated)

According to both the records page of the USATF and Track and Field News, Dartmouth freshman Abbey D’Agostino broke the American Junior Record in the 5,000-meter run last evening at the NCAA Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, finishing third behind Villanova’s Sheila Reid and Georgetown’s Emily Infeld and in front of Oregon’s Jordan Hasay.

D’Agostino’s time of 15:40.69 shattered the Ivy League record by more than 10 seconds and is about two-and-a-half seconds faster than the listed AJR time of 15:43.31 established by Laurynne Chetelat of Stanford in 2009. The previous Heps’ record of 15:51.30 was set by Olympian Kate O’Neill of Yale in 2003.

UPDATE: As far as it relates to the American Junior Record, please note that the USATF website lists two separate marks — Chetelat’s since-bettered record from 2009 and a 15:36.95p by Notre Dame’s Molly Huddle at Mount Sac in 2003. Here’s the story, Huddle’s time remains unratified, which could have been the result of missing data from any of a number of requirements for the establishment of a record. The ‘p’ following the record indicates ‘pending,’ which means that the folks at USATF are aware of the mark, but now, eight years later, continue to await approval. Folks at the bible of the sport, Track & Field News, do not even list Huddle’s mark, thus D’Agostino, whose mark has been submitted, will likely replace Chetelat in the record books.

And D’Agostino was not the only rookie All-American from Heps on Friday as Penn rookie Maalik Reynolds claimed a tie for seventh in the high jump with a clearance of 2.14 meters (7-0 1/4).

Princeton junior Donn Cabral had the steeplechase of his lifetime as well, finishing second behind Louisville senior Matt Hughes in 8:32.14. That shaved more than three seconds off of Cabral’s all-time best and placed him about three seconds behind the all-time Heps record of Dartmouth’s Michael Fadil (8:29.01), who has held the mark since 1985.

Yale senior Kate Grace went out in style, earning All-American status yet again in the 800-meter run, taking fifth in 2:04.22. The final three 800m times were each better than her previous best.

Brown’s Brynn Smith also capped her fine career with a 10th-place showing in the hammer throw, posting a mark of 61.79 meters (202-8). That is a mere three inches shy of the Ivy League record she set at Outdoor Heps last month.

In D’Agostino’s breakthrough race, two other Ivy Leaguers were in the pack with Penn sophomore Leslie Kovach claiming 18th in 16:16.10 and Princeton senior Alex Banfich finishing her rounds in 16:19.70, good for 20th.

Meanwhile, Cornell junior Nick Huber completed the decathlon on Friday with 7,586 points, which left him 13th in the rankings. Huber’s score was seven points shy of his personal best.

Two other Heps entries racing Friday were Cornell senior Nate Edelman and the Princeton men’s 4×400-meter relay. Edelman’s 10k and the relay were moved from Thursday to Friday following inclement weather.

Edelman was 13th in the 10,000-meter run, finishing in 29:30.60 while the foursome of Tom Hopkins, Russell Dinkins, Mike Eddy and Austin Hollimon ran a speedy 3:06.94, but failed to qualify for the final by about two-and-a-half seconds.

The final day of competition at the NCAAs will feature:
11:05 am • Men’s triple jump national final — Gary Jones (Cornell)
12:54 pm • Women’s steeplechase national final — Ashley Higginson (Princeton)
1:21 pm • Men’s 5,000m run national final — Mark Amirault (Princeton); Donn Cabral (Princeton)

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